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Wilson Sporting Goods Teams with CD-adapco for Aerodynamics Simulation

By DE Editors

Wilson Sporting Goods Teams with CD-adapco for Aerodynamics Simulation

Wilson is using CD-adapco’s STAR-CCM+ software on Windows HPC Server 2008 to perform aerodynamics research on its soccer balls.

While the attention of the world focused on soccer balls this summer, Wilson teamed with CD-adapco to redefine computer simulations of soccer ball aerodynamics. During preparations and through the final match of this year’s World Cup, FIFA fielded complaints from many players concerned with uncontrollable speed and/or unpredictable flight behavior of the official match ball, which was developed and manufactured by the tournament’s primary corporate sponsor.   

“Wilson has long realized the importance of aerodynamics in the design of reliable and high-performance golf balls, footballs, soccer balls, basketballs, and baseballs,” says Doug Guenther, Wilson Sporting Goods Co., vice president of Research and Development. "Several factors lead to the choice of CD-adapco and STAR-CCM+. The ability of STAR-CCM+ to accurately and efficiently solve unsteady flows with boundary layer transition was certainly a key technical factor, but equally important is the support and flexibility offered by CD-adapco. Their dedicated support model and Power-on-Demand offering is an ideal solution for our needs."
In the past, most computational fluid dynamics (CFD) studies were limited to fundamental models. This was accomplished by simplifying the details in the shape of the ball and reducing the actual flow physics involved. These simplifications eventually led to inaccurate results, according to the company, forcing ball designers to perform expensive and time-consuming wind tunnel tests.

Using STAR-CCM+ allows Wilson to model the genuine shape of the ball including details such as the panels, seams and stitches. This is important because these geometric details affect the transition of the airflow from laminar to turbulent flow, and this is the critical element to accurately predicting the aerodynamic drag and stability of the ball. The initial phases of the project were executed using Power-on-Demand with computer clusters running Windows HPC Server 2008.

The Power-on-Demand offering from CD-adapco enables Wilson to take advantage of cloud computing when executing the STAR-CCM+ simulations. "Cloud computing is a fantastic cost-effective solution for Wilson, and our Power-on-Demand offering makes it easy to use STAR-CCM+ on the cloud," says David L. Vaughn, vice president of Worldwide Marketing for CD-adapco.

For more information, visit CD-adapco.

Sources: Press materials received from the company and additional information gleaned from the company’s website.

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